Liga de Loja defended its status as local and defeated 2-1 the River Plate of Argentina, in the duel of the second round of the South American Cup, with goals from Pedro Larrea and Johnny Uchuari. Osmar Ferreyra scored for the visitors.
After 15 minutes the referee ruled a penalty for the lojanos, but linesman sanctioned the play as out of position and the penalty sanction was dismissed.
After 32 minutes, Larrea opened the scoring for the locals in a well organized play when, with a free kick the strikers from Loja made two touches and scored.
In the second half River improved and fought to a draw after 58 minutes through Ferreyra. But four minutes later, at the best of the visitors, Defender Germán Pezzella took down Uchuari and the referee ordered the maximum penalty that the same player turned into goal in the minute 65.
The return game will be next Thursday in Buenos Aires.
Liga de Loja, only Ecuadorean team in the South American Cup, has achieved several successes in international matches against great rivals, as Sao Paulo of Brazil, Nacional of Uruguay, among others.